Consultation on the 20% Reduction in Car Km Route Map

About this consultation

COSLA logoIn response to the global climate emergency, Scotland’s Climate Change Plan update in 2020 set out a world-leading commitment to reduce car kilometres by 20% by 2030. Transport accounts for a quarter of Scotland’s greenhouse gas emissions, with cars making up almost 40% of transport emissions. Carbon-reduction modelling has concluded that it will not be possible to reach net-zero emissions through technological solutions alone. Reducing car use is essential in order for the transport system to be decarbonised at a pace that meets the statutory emissions targets set by the Scottish Parliament.

The route map, co-developed by Transport Scotland and the Convention of Scottish Local Authorities (COSLA), sets out the suite of transport and non-transport policies that will be implemented to support car-use reduction in order to deliver a healthier, fairer and more prosperous Scotland for communities, businesses and visitors.

While we recognise that using cars less may be more challenging for some people in certain geographical locations and those who have certain travel needs such as specific disabilities, we want to ensure that we enable an inclusive conversation on sustainable travel. We have therefore deliberately chosen a range of sustainable travel behaviours that people can choose to adopt. Our aim is to enable everyone in Scotland to feel empowered to re-think their car-use behaviour for as many journeys as possible, and we therefore need to ensure we communicate on this issue with as broad an audience as possible.

Through this consultation, we aim to understand further the public opinion on the approach taken in the route map; as well as opinion on the potential impacts, and mitigation of said impacts, of the interventions on groups with protected characteristics, island communities, and across socio-economic disparity.


Respond to the consultation online

Respond to the consultation by email


Responding to this consultation

The Scottish Government and COSLA are inviting responses to this consultation by 6 April 2022.

Please respond to this joint Scottish Government and COSLA consultation using the Scottish Government’s consultation hub, Citizen Space.

You can save and return to your responses while the consultation is still open. Please ensure that consultation responses are submitted before the closing date of 6 April 2022.

If you are unable to respond to the joint Scottish Government and COSLA consultation using our consultation hub, please complete the Respondent Information Form and return to:

  • Email:
  • Post: 20% Reduction in Car Kms Route Map, Transport Strategy & Analysis Directorate, Transport Scotland, Buchanan House, 4th Floor, 58 Port Dundas Road, Glasgow, G4 0HF

Handling your response

If you respond using the consultation hub, you will be directed to the 'About You' page before submitting your response. Please indicate how you wish your response to be handled and, in particular, whether you are content for your response to published. If you ask for your response not to be published, we will regard it as confidential, and we will treat it accordingly.

All respondents should be aware that the Scottish Government is subject to the provisions of the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002 and would therefore have to consider any request made to it under the Act for information relating to responses made to this consultation exercise.

If you are unable to respond via Citizen Space, please complete and return the Respondent Information Form included in this document.

To find out how we handle your personal data, please see our privacy policy.

Next steps in the process

Where respondents have given permission for their response to be made public, and after we have checked that they contain no potentially defamatory material, responses will be made available to the public on Citizen Space. If you use the consultation hub to respond, you will receive a copy of your response via email.

Following the closing date, all responses will be analysed and considered along with any other available evidence to help us further progress the joint Scottish Government and COSLA route map. Responses will be published where we have been given permission to do so. An analysis report will also be made available.

Comments and complaints

If you have any comments about how this consultation exercise has been conducted, please send them to the contact address above or email your comments to

Scottish Government consultation process

Consultation is an essential part of the policymaking process. It gives us the opportunity to consider your opinion and expertise on a proposed area of work.

You can find all our consultations online. Each consultation details the issues under consideration, as well as a way for you to give us your views, either online, or by email or post.

Responses will be analysed and used as part of the decision making process, along with a range of other available information and evidence. We will publish a report of this analysis for every consultation. Depending on the nature of the consultation exercise the responses received may:

  • indicate the need for policy development or review
  • inform the development of a particular policy
  • help decisions to be made between alternative policy proposals
  • be used to finalise legislation before it is implemented

While details of particular circumstances described in a response to a consultation exercise may usefully inform the policy process, consultation exercises cannot address individual concerns and comments, which should be directed to the relevant public body.

Consultation Questions

The Route Map

The route map - ‘Reducing car travel by 20% by 2030 for a healthier, fairer and greener Scotland’ – is a joint publication by the Scottish Government and COSLA and sets out the actions that the Scottish Government and local authorities in Scotland are taking to make it easier for people to reduce their car kilometres through four key sustainable travel behaviours.

These behaviours are:

  1. to make use of sustainable online options to reduce your need to travel
  2. to choose local destinations to reduce the distance you travel
  3. switch to walk, wheel, cycle or public transport where possible
  4. combine a trip or share a journey to reduce the number of individual car trips you make, if car remains the only feasible option

Question one

Do you agree with the overall behaviour change approach, and do you have any comments on the four behaviours outlined above? Please explain.

Question two

What are the key opportunities of reducing car kilometres?

Question three

What are the key challenges faced in reducing car kilometres?

Question four

Are there any further actions you would like to see included in future to support behaviour change 1) - reducing the need to travel?

Question five

Are there any further actions you would like to see included in future to support behaviour change 2) - choosing local options?

Question six

Are there any further actions you would like to see included in future to support behaviour change 3) - switching to more sustainable modes of travel?

Question seven

Are there any further actions you would like to see included in future to support behaviour change 4) - combining or sharing journeys?

Question eight

Do you have any comment to make on any of the specific policies contained within the route map?

Social and Equalities

In creating the route map to reduce car kilometres, the public sector equality duty requires the Scottish Government to pay due regard to the need to the following:

  • Eliminate discrimination, victimisation, harassment or other unlawful conduct that is prohibited under the Equality Act 2010
  • Advance equality opportunity between people who share a protected characteristic and those who do not
  • Foster good relations between people who share a relevant protected characteristic.

These three requirements apply across the protected characteristics of:

  • age
  • disability
  • gender reassignment
  • marriage and civil partnership
  • pregnancy and maternity
  • race
  • religion and belief
  • sex and sexual orientation

The Scottish Government must also include consideration of:

  • children and young people (Child Rights and Wellbeing)
  • socioeconomic disadvantage, low wealth, and area deprivation (Fairer Scotland Duty)

Section 8 of the Islands (Scotland) Act 2018 (Scottish Parliament, 2018) requires the Scottish Government to prepare an island communities impact assessment in relation to a policy, strategy, or service, which is likely to have an effect on an island community which is significantly different from its effect on other communities.

The current draft impact assessments have been published alongside the Route Map and are available on the Transport Scotland website.

The Scottish Government will consider the responses from the consultation process in determining any actions needed to meet its statutory obligations. Your comments will be considered in the completion of the impact assessments to determine whether any further work in this area is needed.

Impact assessment

Question one

Do you think that the proposals set out in this plan could have positive or negative impacts on any particular groups of people with reference to the listed protected characteristics?

If you think the proposals will have a particular impact on certain groups due to protected characteristics, what measures would you suggest to maximise positive impacts or mitigate negative impacts?

Question two

Do you think that the proposals set out in this plan could have a particular impact (positive or negative) on island communities?

More Information

Engagement with island communities was undertaken as part of the development of National Transport Strategy (NTS2). This engagement identified unique transport challenges relevant to island communities.

If you think the proposals will impact on island communities, what measures would you suggest to maximise positive impacts or mitigate negative impacts?

Question three

Do you think that the proposals set out in this plan could have a particular impact (positive or negative) on people facing socio-economic disadvantages?

If you think the proposals will have a particular impact based on socio-economic factors what measures would you suggest to maximise positive impacts or mitigate negative impacts?

The Environment

The Environmental Assessment (Scotland) Act 2005 ensures those public proposals that are likely to have a significant impact on the environment are assessed and measures to prevent or reduce adverse effects are sought, where possible, prior to implementation.

Question one

Do you think the actions proposed in the route map are likely to have an impact on the environment? If so, in what way? Please be as specific as possible in your reasoning.

Other Comment

Question one

Do you have views you would like to express relating to parts of this consultation which do not have a specific question? If so, please elaborate

Impact assessments

Published Date 13 Jan 2022 Mode of transport Topic Status